By Suzan Edeh
Emotions ran very high at the Yelwa cemetery in Bauchi State as five members of the Living Faith Church who were victims of Last Sunday’s bomb blast were finally laid to rest. It was a time for sober reflection, weeping and wailing by families and friends of the victims of the blast.
For all present, it was another opportunity to reflect on this sad reality of life: Death is an inevitable end every mortal must experience one day. As the caskets of the five victims were brought down from the ambulances to the cemetery, many people, particular the women, could not control their emotions. They cried, shouted and rained curses on those who had caused them pain.
It would be recalled that at least 20 people were killed, while 45 others sustained injuries when a suicide bomber stormed the Living Faith and Harvest of Field Church in Yelwa Tundun area of the state.
The burial attracted hundreds of relatives of the deceased persons, Christians, school children and journalists. They came to pay their last respects to the victims of the bomb blast. It was really a pitiable sight to behold as most of those present wept uncontrollably while the burial lasted, especially the mother of one of the victims who went into a prolonged paroxysm of wailing that provoked profuse tears from many around.
“All efforts to console her were to no avail. She said: “My son, you did not tell me that you were going to leave me so soon. So it is really true that you are dead. You were my only hope and now you are gone. Where do I start from? Oh God, when will I wake up from this nightmare?”
Among those buried was Honourable Irmiya Hassan Dodo, 67, a Second Republic House of Representatives member. Others were Joseph Kehinde Aiyedipe, 30, a student of Federal Polytechnic, Bauchi; Samuel Olusegun, 16, an SS II student of Divine International School, Bauchi; Augustine Effion Ita, 32, an Adolescent Health Specialist and Suru Gbamgboshe, a final year student of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi.
When the five caskets were
laid beside their respective graves for burial, the Presiding pastor of the church, Gaius Biyal, in his brief sermon, admonished Christians not to seek revenge against anyone because of what had happened to their family members or friends.
“Vengeance belongs to the Lord; vengeance belongs to Jesus Christ who was persecuted for our sake. It is He who can fight on our behalf. He knows what to do and if we try to do it ourselves, we will die in the process.
These people died for what they believed in and sacrificed their lives so that others may live. They died doing the work of God and if I may ask all of us here, when death comes knocking at our doors, where will we be and what will be said that we were doing at that moment? This is a lesson for every living being to remember, that one day we will give account of our lives before our Maker. Dust to dust and ashes to ashes, shall all return,” the pastor said.
The Chairman of the Chris
tian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Reverend Pokti Lewi, also stressed the need for Christians not to take the law into their hands because of what happened , warning that CAN as a body will not support such action. He condemned the killings by soldiers who were drafted to the bomb site, assuring that God will avenge the lives of the innocent people being killed without a cause.
In his own remarks, the President of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN, Reverend Emeka Emefesi, said the community was in sorrow over the unfortunate incident.
“Christ died and resurrected and asked us to prepare for the resurrection. What has happened is to tell us to prepare for the resurrection because death can meet us anytime,” he said.
Students of Divine International, Bauchi were seen crying profusely as the remains of Samuel, their friend was interred. “He was one of my duty perfects and a boy with promising future; very focused, very obedient and respectful,” the Proprietor of the school, Dr Ogbuka Chimeze, told Vanguard Metro at the burial ground.
“I believe in the injunction of Scripture(Bible) that we should give glory to God no matter the situation. Our Hope is in the name of God. May his soul rest in peace,” she prayed.